A winter prairie morning sun, smoothing the blush of first light, has a purifying radiance that chills and freezes. It performs the same task as the burning coals of a smelting fire, or the salty brine of an equatorial coast. It refines all that it touches, preserves and separates all that is essential in the elements. And if the sun strikes the freshly fallen snow that serves as northern dew, it cleanses the rising daylight hours and strikes a muffled note of hope.